I’ve been eating a bowl of cereal for breakfast since LBJ was in office. So when I tried to change my habit (for the sake of a first-diet-ever) I was shocked at the complete resistance of my entire mind/body/soul. Whoa. We’re just talking cereal here…
“The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.” Samuel Johnson, 1709-1784
Amen to that.
An Olympic archer once told our teens, “It’s not true ‘practice makes perfect.’ Practice makes permanent. Perfect practice makes perfect.”
I have practiced some things til they are near perfect as well as permanent. And not all of them are good, let me tell you. You could start with some of my responses to the hidden disabilities in my life. I’m pretty sure that’s why God allowed the disabilities into my life in the first place – to help me agree with Him that yes, sir, I do sin.
Sooo, I wonder, given the strength of habit, what’s the mathematical chance of changing my sinful reaction to be anxious? to fix my husband? to rescue my kids? to be independent from God? to name a few….
If you want a word picture, those doubts of God’s power to save me are multiple wet sandbags hanging heavily by ropes of habit onto my partially inflated balloon of faith…and if you’re looking for me, I am definitely in the basket, dragged along the rocky, bumpy ground, instead of lifting off to the sky. Bump, bump, BumPITY (self pity) BUMP….
What knife can cut me free to fly?
There is another way to ask this. When I am faced with something that is hard, confusing, hurtful, angering – which hidden disabilities often are – how long does it take me to run to Jesus?
I can be like the kid in the Family Circus cartoon, with my tracks running up and down everything else on my way to the Throne.
I feel completely small, admitting this, given His perfect track record towards me. But today I reread Jesus’s temptations. Why did He disclose only 3 of them? Why those 3? In my thinking, it was a perfect waste of time and ammo for Satan to attack Jesus with the temptation to fall down and worship him, in trade for a broken world.
But it comforts me today, as I realize God gave this temptation – to worship/seek/rely on something other than the LORD – a full one third of the airtime…not because His Son would fall for it, but because I would.
Decisively, Jesus replied, “Away with you, Satan! For it is WRITTEN, ‘You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve.”
And there’s my Knife – “it is written,” as in “the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two edged sword…able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12
I want to practice running a perfectly straight line to His Word and His Throne, fast and first, to find help in time of need, which I have plenty of. And I want to perfectly believe every word God wrote. Like Jesus did. I want to fly.
“Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.” Matt 4:8-11 ish
Yes, and I am all for sending those angels on down here to minister….